Serving in Love
Address delivered by Mel Trotter at Fellowship meeting of the Sunday School Officers and Teachers, April 27, 1922.
In this end of the city you are but touching the border. Really the work you do here is just marvelous, but you are only just touching the great field all around you. You ought to be out after the unsaved boys and girls all the while. Take your class out and put them to work. We used to think that to do open air work we had to go out on the streets and preach. We are doing street work in a different way today. We can go into almost any factory. Some of these factories have ball teams. They call the ball game at the noon hour, and then let us preach the Gospel.
There is nothing that will touch the hearts of the factory men like the singing of your Sunday School girls. You can get them into your Sunday School. You can go even among public schools and get the boys and girls. You will have opposition but that is always healthy. You can make up your mind that if you will go out you will find an open door.
It is nice to have classes. It is great to have a Sunday School. It is wonderful to be in a church like The Moody Church where you get nothing but the old time religion. You must be born again. We have all sinned and come short of the glory of God. Until we are born again we are never safe for this life and not safe for the life to come. But God saved you for only one thing, and that is to go out and tell the other fellow about it. Some of us become selfish and get the big head.
You remember the story of Uzziah, in the book of Isaiah. How Uzziah exalted himself and God brought him low. At that time Isaiah got a vision of himself and said, “Woe is me. I am unclean.” When he got down humbly before God, then God cleansed him and began to speak to him. He did not command Isaiah to go, but he asked: “Who will go for us?” God pleads for our love and loving service.
There are a lot of folks in the world who are orthodox and believe that the Lord Jesus Christ saves them from sin. They believe in their head and their character instead of believing in the Lord. This is a day when we have got to go out. People are not coming in to see us.
Let us get humble so that the Lord can use us. When the Lord cleansed Isaiah, he said, “Whom shall we send?” He did not say, “You get up and go.” He is not going to drive you. He only takes those who want Him. That is the reason He gives man a fee will. Why don’t God strike that man down and get him saved? He doesn’t want to. God doesn’t want anybody that doesn’t choose Him. So He said, “Whom shall I send?” You say, “Here am I. Send me.” We never will be able to say that until we hit humility and fall down before Him.
The Holy Spirit Directs
I have tried it in every language and the only time God uses me is when I simply say, “Lord, I don’t know where I am. But here I am. You command me and I will go.”
There is a lot of difference between noise and a message. You have gone to your Sunday School without power, and that was the day you had better stayed at home and let the Substitute Teachers’ Class furnish somebody to teach. You come into the Sunday School with something in your heart that is not of God. You come in with an idea that it is drudgery. Really you had better not come.
Sometimes God will even use a jackass to praise Him, but God is calling you to bigger things. The Holy Ghost will take the things of Jesus and reveal them unto you. When Jesus Christ gets in, all that hinders will go out. You perhaps cannot see Jesus, but when the Holy Spirit gets into your life you are going to begin to see Him, and the more you see Him the less you see of yourself and you will get lower and lower, and you will cry out, “I am undone. I am a man of unclean lips.” You may be very religious yet have no spiritual power. You may look pious and be a lot of unclean people. The nearer you get to God the more you will see that thing.
When you get all alone and get to a place where you want to see Him, you can hardly realize how far you can get away from Him. The Crowds are watching us. You hardly meet a person in the street that has not problems in his heart. There is not a man you meet but what has a longing to meet Jesus. They may not know what they are hungry for. There is hardly a man or woman or child that is not hungry for something that they can find only in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Witnessing for Christ
We are the living epistles that are read and known of all men. The hungry are looking for a way out. The devil keeps them out. The devil keeps them out of the church. You can go and hold a meeting in a theater and they will come. I am glad for your tabernacle here, for people will come to it when they won’t go to a church. I try to preach in the theaters as often as I can, for I can reach the unsaved people there.
I knew a lady who tried for a long time to get her husband into a meeting but she could not. She finally got him up to the place where we were holding a Gospel meeting on the street. The very first words that were thrust out he took them, bait, hook and line. The first time he heard the Word, God touched him. He came down to the Mission that night and was saved.
One day we were holding a meeting for the factory men, near where there was a ball game going on. We were preaching away and when the meeting was over all of them went away. The men started back for the factory but one of the fellows went to the foreman and said, “I want to go home for a while.”
When he got into the house his wife was holding the little sick baby in her arms. She was trying to keep it alive. It was dying of pneumonia. He said: “Honey, a man over at the factory was speaking to us. He said he was pastor of this little church. I wonder if you would not like to have me go and bring him over and have him pray with us.”
He went over and the preacher had just sat down to his dinner. He got up from the table, put on his hat and followed the man to his home. He prayed for the baby and prayed that the father and mother might be saved. It is needless to say that the baby got well. The first Sunday morning they were able to get out and they attended the church service, and they are now workers in the church.
It is the little things that count. God is not using big things. God is using the little fellows, the humble ones. Everywhere you go you can speak for Jesus Christ.
What Will You Do with Jesus?
We can go out and do what anybody else can do. Crowds are changing every day. What thou doest you have to do quickly. From the figures given here tonight, there were 123 Officers and Teachers who have passed out of this Sunday school during the past two years. God will have to humble us, then we can go into the highways and byways and compel people to come in.
Some time ago I held a meeting in a little hut. My quartet was with me. They sang the Gospel, and I preached a message on “What are you doing with Jesus, which is called the Christ?” What can I do? I can crown Him or I can crucify Him. You have heard me preach that sermon many times. I have led thousands of people to Christ through that sermon.
At the close of the message a Chautauqua promoter came up and said:
“You have sold me your goods.”
“What do you mean? I’ve nothing to sell.”
“Yes, sir. I will give you two hundred dollars a day to come out on a Chautauqua circuit. Let your quartet sing, and you preach that message.”
“The message isn’t preached that way.”
I am so burdened about Jesus I don’t think anything else will work. You can take Him for everything. Take Him for your sorrow. Take Him when you are sick. Take Him for every kind of trouble that comes to you. Take Him into you heart and He will be your all in all when you put Him there.
Sunday School teacher, God has picked you out and you are standing between God and men. Between heaven and hell. I never get up before a crowd but what I think, “Oh Jesus! Somebody may perish because I have failed to do the thing that Christ has called me to do.”
If you love God, love to say, “I will go all the way,” the first thing you know you will see things that are not so pleasant. You will meet with all kinds of discouragement and opposition. Always remember that when the bottom drops out God comes in. Have you any afflictions? Are you facing hard days? That is the time when the Lord gets nearest to you? Let us get together and get down before the Lord and say, “Here am I. Send me.”